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Article

Organizational Learning Capacity and Sustainability Challenges in Times of Crisis: A Study on Tourism SMEs in Galicia (Spain)

1
Department of Business Organization, Business Administration and Tourism School, University of Vigo, 32004 Ourense, Spain
2
Financial Economics and Accounting Department, University of Vigo, 32004 Ourense, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: José M. Ramírez-Hurtado, Juan Manuel Berbel Pineda and Francisco Rejón-Guardia
Sustainability 2021, 13(21), 11764; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111764
Received: 20 September 2021 / Revised: 15 October 2021 / Accepted: 20 October 2021 / Published: 25 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends on Responsible and Sustainable Tourism)
The COVID-19 crisis has encouraged a major shift towards greater environmental awareness and sustainable consumption. However, in times of severe crisis, SMEs primarily look to return to normalcy and their own survival rather than implementing a sustainable agenda. This paper aims to contribute to the understanding of the learning problems faced by small tourism enterprises in a crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper explores the learning capacity of SMEs and the importance of establishing mechanisms that provide SMEs with the keys to organizational learning as a source of continuous knowledge. Open-ended semi-structured interviews with 39 tourism SMEs managers in Galicia (Spain) were conducted during the toughest months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The results show that SMEs have not been fully involved in the learning process, which is mainly related to knowledge transfer and integration. DMOs can act as promoters of knowledge management for organizational preparedness by providing SMEs with learning mechanisms and strategies to go beyond simple problem solving when they arise. View Full-Text
Keywords: organizational learning; crisis management; barriers to learning; knowledge transfer; small tourism enterprises organizational learning; crisis management; barriers to learning; knowledge transfer; small tourism enterprises
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MDPI and ACS Style

Toubes, D.R.; Araújo-Vila, N.; Fraiz-Brea, J.A. Organizational Learning Capacity and Sustainability Challenges in Times of Crisis: A Study on Tourism SMEs in Galicia (Spain). Sustainability 2021, 13, 11764. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111764

AMA Style

Toubes DR, Araújo-Vila N, Fraiz-Brea JA. Organizational Learning Capacity and Sustainability Challenges in Times of Crisis: A Study on Tourism SMEs in Galicia (Spain). Sustainability. 2021; 13(21):11764. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111764

Chicago/Turabian Style

Toubes, Diego R., Noelia Araújo-Vila, and José A. Fraiz-Brea. 2021. "Organizational Learning Capacity and Sustainability Challenges in Times of Crisis: A Study on Tourism SMEs in Galicia (Spain)" Sustainability 13, no. 21: 11764. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111764

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